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Becoming Americans in Paris: Transatlantic Politics and Culture Between the World Wars
Americans often look back on Paris between the world wars as a charming escape from the enduring inequalities and reactionary politics of the United States. In this bold and original study, Brooke Blower shows that nothing could be further from the truth. She reveals the breadth of American activities in the capital, the lessons visitors drew from their stay, and the passi ...more
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published January 17th 2011 by Oxford University Press, USA
(first published December 20th 2010)
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Trekking beyond the well-trod historical path, peppered with stories of “The Lost Generation” in “Gay Paree,” Blower re-reads archival evidence to analyze how Americans in Paris between the world wars not only participated in the American cultural and economic expansion that others, such as Emily Rosenberg in Spreading the American Dream: American Economic and Cultural Expansion, 1890-1945 have chronicled, but were involved in a two-way exchange that shaped what it meant to be American – ideolog ...more
This was a serious, densely packed book with a great deal of information about, and analysis of, the cultural and political interactions of Americans in Paris between the wars. It was not a light read, but I read it cover to cover over a couple of months. If you're looking for "Midnight in Paris," this isn't it!--although many of the same expat characters appear in both. What it is, is a well-reasoned exploration of America coming of age after World War I and defining what it would be in relatio ...more
Nov 27, 2011 Nari (The Novel World) rated it liked it · review of another edition
This book is definitely not a bit of light reading, in case you are wondering. Although it is densely packed with information, Brooke Blower's writing style makes it easy and entertaining to get through. As to her theme of the book, it really felt like a long catalog of reason of why Americans are hated in Europe. It seems like many of the reasons still resonate today. In generalized words, Americans are pompous, loud, demanding and unsympathetic to the way of life in the country they are visiti ...more
I am surprised that Oxford printed this. I am somewhat shocked that it was apparently (per author bio) sanctioned by Princeton as a doctoral thesis. It should be listed as a travel book with footnotes. It's closer to "Midnight in Paris" than to "Discovery of France" (http://www.amazon.com/The-Discovery-F...) which is in the same discipline - and a fantastic book. If it's a historical/political book, why does the author romance the topic? If it's cultural criticism, why doesn't the book analyze c ...more